Things That Matter

Women Across Argentina Are Taking To The Streets Demanding More Freedoms With The #NiUnaMenos Feminist Revolution

Cecilia Palmeiro is the fierce mujer behind Argentina’s “Ni Una Menos” (not one less) campaign against femicide. Their first national protest was in October 2016, and since then, the movement has touched different corners of a larger issue of systematic female oppression. Abortion is illegal in Argentina, recently ratified after a failed attempt to legalize abortion last year. Ni Una Menos sees abortion rights and economic security as two sides to the same coin.

On Monday, Palmeiro organized another major national strike, drawing in thousands of Argentine poderosas to call on the country to take emergency action for women.

In recent years, Argentina’s economy has plummeted into crisis, causing the government to cut social services.

@RaffaghelliMae / Twitter

The families that once relied on these services are forced into private debt. Palmeiro also sees a rising pattern of women being forced to stay in abusive relationships because it is financially unfeasible to leave.

This year’s protest may have had an undercurrent of economic goals, but the message is the same.

@theGirlMob / Twitter

Protesters held signs showing the faces of women who have been murdered by their abusive partners. The message is simple: we can’t afford to lose one more woman to unfettered sexism.

With another election coming up in October, protesters regrouped the next day to advocate for abortion rights.

@helloallohola / Twitter

Abortion is only legal in Argentina if the woman was raped or the pregnancy is a risk to her health. Congress rejected the National Campaign for Legal, Safe, and Free Abortion’s bill last year. They’re submitting another bill this year to legalize abortion.

These three touchstones–ending domestic violence, ending the economic crisis, and legalizing abortion–are the key to gender equality for Palmeiro.

@AmyBwrites / Twitter

Like most social issues, there isn’t one easy fix. It’s an issue that we, as a society, have created over generations and that take sweeping efforts to untangle and undo.

And, like always, women in poverty feel the effects of patriarchal laws the most severely.

@GabyNaso / Twitter

Yamila Picasso of the National Campaign for Legal, Safe and Free abortion told Al Jazeera, “We see that there is a clear relationship between these factors because abortion is a matter of social justice. Those who have the economic means can have an abortion, and those who do not must have unsafe or clandestine abortions.”

Around Buenos Aires, you’ll find political art wherever you look.

@LasNegrasArre / Twitter

#NiUnaMenos is calling for stricter punishment laws against men who commit violent acts against women, in the hope of deterring and changing the culture. Women feel a danger walking the street that most men don’t, and this bench exemplifies this implicit policing of women’s bodies.

Here, you’ll see the shoes of murdered Argentine women.

@raquelvivanco / Twitter

The National Register of Femicides reported 1193 femicides between March 6, 2015 and May 20, 2019. Leaving the shoes of these women at the steps of Congress was an effort to make their absence more visible.

A walk around Buenos Aires shows abundant examples of protest.

@mariekeriethof / Twitter

This wall effectively reads “Death to machísmo!” #NiUnaMenos’ message is everywhere–from random walls to not so random walls.

#NiUnaMenos is also targeting churches at the heart of abuse scandals.

@mariekeriethof / Twitter

Twitter user @mariekeriethof posted this photo of graffiti on a church that reads “Trash Church.” She writes, “Anti-Church graffiti on the side of Salta’s main church, focusing on abuse. I’ve seen a lot of very angry graffiti on this topic around Chile and Argentina. Also churches with buckets of paint thrown at them by protesters. #niunamenos”

Even the cast of Orange is the New Black is speaking out.

If you care about this issue, tweet out about it using the hashtags #NiUnaMenos or #VivasNosQueremos. Argentina, estamos contigo.

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An ICE Nurse Says That Migrant Women Are Having Hysterectomies Performed Without Their Consent While In Detention Centers

Fierce

An ICE Nurse Says That Migrant Women Are Having Hysterectomies Performed Without Their Consent While In Detention Centers

Janis Christie / Getty Images

On Monday, news broke that an ICE detention center in Georgia was performing mass hysterectomies on migrants without their consent. The allegations came from a nurse at the facility along with numerous detained migrants and left many people shocked.

However, the U.S. has a long history of forcing people – especially people of color – into unwanted sterilization, which is a human rights violation and a form of eugenics.

Of course, when it comes to undocumented immigrants, who are regularly referred to as “unwanted” “aliens” by the current president, it’s not so surprising that these practices went unreported for so long. One immigrant in the complaint put it best: “This place is not equipped for humans.”

An ICE nurse and several migrant women allege that a doctor is removing women’s reproductive systems without their consent.

According to the complaint filed Monday by Project South, an Atlanta-based non-profit, a high number of detained immigrant women held at the Irwin County Detention Center (ICDC) in Ocilla, Ga., are receiving hysterectomies, as well as other “dangerously unhealthy practices” at the prison amid the Coronavirus pandemic.

Dawn Wooten, who worked full-time at the detention center until July, when she was demoted to work as needed, said she and other nurses questioned among themselves why one unnamed gynecologist outside the facility was performing so many hysterectomies on detainees referred to him for additional medical treatment. She alleged about one doctor that “everybody he sees has a hysterectomy,” and that he removed the wrong ovary from one young detainee.

“We’ve questioned among ourselves like, goodness he’s taking everybody’s stuff out…That’s his speciality, he’s the uterus collector,” Ms. Wooten said in the complaint.

One detainee, interviewed by Project South, likened the center to “an experimental concentration camp,” adding: “It was like they’re experimenting with our bodies.”

“If it wasn’t for my faith in God, I think I would have gone insane and just break down and probably gone as far as hurting myself,” the woman said. “There are a lot of people here who end up in medical trying to kill themselves because of how crazy it is.”

The same prison has also come under fire for its medical practices amid the Covid-19 pandemic.

Credit: Samuel Corum / Getty Images

Project South said the complaint alleges “jarring accounts from detained immigrants and Wooten regarding the deliberate lack of medical care, unsafe work practices, and absence of adequate protection against Covid-19.”

It summarizes the disclosures Dawn Wooten made to the DHS’s watchdog, and quotes unidentified detainees extensively. Covid-19 complaints included staff refusing to test symptomatic detainees, failing to isolate suspected cases, and not encouraging social-distancing practices.

For their part, ICE says to take the reports with skepticism.

A U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement representative released this statement to Law & Crime News in response to the complaint: “U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) does not comment on matters presented to the Office of the Inspector General, which provides independent oversight and accountability within the U.S. Department of Homeland Security. ICE takes all allegations seriously and defers to the OIG regarding any potential investigation and/or results. That said, in general, anonymous, unproven allegations, made without any fact-checkable specifics, should be treated with the appropriate skepticism they deserve.”

Women in ICE custody have long been subjected to cruel and inhumane treatment.

Credit: Getty Stock

Immigrant detention centers have long been accused of subpar medical care. However, the issue has become even worse amid the pandemic. The report filed by Project South describes how migrants are forced to live in unsanitary and unsafe conditions and even thrown into solitary if they advocate for basic human rights. But even before the outbreak, immigrant women’s bodies have always been the target of medical malpractice and cruelty.

ICE has allegedly denied treatment to detained women with cancer, brain tumors, and breast cysts, and it has a history of policing their bodies. The Trump administration has been accused of tracking migrant girls’ periods to prevent them from getting abortions, introduced a policy to deny pregnant women visitor visas, and literally ripped mothers apart from their babies during family separation. Azadeh Shahshahani, the legal and advocacy director for Project South, said women held at ICDC have said they are not given clean underwear which leads to infections and rashes.

She said detained women, who are mostly Black and brown, are in extremely vulnerable situations in which “they have no control over their bodies.” “It’s a very exploitative situation,” Shahshahani said of the hysterectomies. “There does not seem to be informed consent … they had pretty much no say in what exactly took place.”

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Best Hack To Help You Stop Saying ‘Sorry’

Fierce

Best Hack To Help You Stop Saying ‘Sorry’

IslandRepublic

Here’s a question: how often do you find yourself saying “sorry” too much?If you’ve ever found yourself apologizing for someone else’s behavior or approaching a receptionist at an office by saying: “I’m sorry to bother you but I have a question”… you might have an apology problem on your hands. Whether you’re people-pleasing, a perfectionist, feeling insecure, or just doing it unconsciously, over-apologizing is a bad habit that all women should learn to unlearn.

Fortunately, there are cures and hacks for avoiding saying “sorry” too often and Latinas are sharing them on Instagram

A recent drawing we shared on our Instagram page, not only maps out ways to stop using the word but prompted other Latinas to share their tricks as well.

Recently, an artist on Instagram shared a drawing that maps out how to stop saying sorry when you don’t really need to. The post inspired users to share similar hacks to avoid apologizing.

It also got women to open up about why they do so.

Check out some of the tricks and reasons below!

This chica who learned that the “I’m sorry” and “don’t say you’re sorry” thing can be cyclical.

“My ex used to tell me this. He said I say sorry too much. When I’d say it, he’d ask what are you sorry for, you didn’t do anything. It’s like we were raised to be sorry for even being alive.” – moneekers

“Yes! Thank you for this!! Would it be much to ask if you all made another one on ‘how to say no.’ I over apologize and I suck at saying ‘no’ whenever I don’t want to do something.” – krna.drn3

“I’m so guilty of apologizing unnecessarily.” – mandieofmiami

This headliner.

“Been difficult to unlearn when you’re raised as a latina. Everything is an apology: disculpe, me puede dar la hora? Ay que pena, mis discuppas por llegar tarde, diaculpen la pobreza.” – m_n_m1975

I have been saying this for years. Save your sorry for when you are truly sorry. We, in this society, have been so conditioned to say sorry for everything that, I feel, the word has lost its meaning.” –longbeachliferadiotv

“Literally was talking yesterday about how this is a thing that I do that I need to stop. I need to cap myself at two apologies for the same thing. Anything more and it gets weird for the other person.” – MermaidZombie

“Space them out. One in the moment (or whenever you realize you did something you need to apologize for), and one after you have some time to think. The second should show that you’re aware you messed up, you regret it, and you’re working to make sure it won’t happen again… but they should both be succinct.” –AngryAngryAlice

This apology sandwich hack.

“Apology sandwich. Apologize, explain your actions, apologize again.” –OldSchoolNewRules

“If your tone is less than “I fucked up, and I hurt you, and it will never happen again” type of thing, then maybe an apology isn’t appropriate at all. “Thank you for being flexible” rather than “Sorry I couldn’t drive you to the airport,” for example.” –CowboyBoats

Try replacing “sorry” with “thank you”

“Genuinely the best advice for this. My girlfriend says sorry for things like the weather or a bad driver. She’s started replacing it with thank you. So “sorry for the weather” turns into ‘thank you for coming out with me despite the rain.’ Every time you go to say sorry, think of how you can thank someone for the same situation.” –NumerousImprovements9 points·2 years ago

“Yes!! Exactly this. I’ve been getting better with not apologizing and now I’m trying to work on not saying the word “just”. I’ll sprinkle it in like “Hey can I have just a moment of your time.” or “I just need you to complete this.” It really minimizes what I’m trying to say and trivializes the importance of the task.” –SpiritedAnybody

This trick is a reminder that you shouldn’t apologize just to get off of the hook.

“I used to be like this. I thought it would ‘absolve’ me or make me a better person or whatever, but it was the opposite. It’s super toxic. Apologizing is supposed to make the other person feel better… not you. If somebody has to make you feel better afterwards, then it wasn’t an apology in the first place.” – EntropyMuffin

“A few years ago a senior, female colleague overheard me making phone calls and commented on how often apologised. She suggested that I stop, I did, and realised that people seemed to respect me more because of it. Success! Around the same time, I stopped being ‘the smiley one who makes cupcakes’ at work and focused on developing a more professional. I’m still friendly and approachable, but I now make a point of earning respect through hard work and try to give better praise to my coworkers (e.g. “great work” rather than “I like your hair”).” – damnfinecupotea

Always remind yourself that saying “sorry” one too many times can make others think you’re not very confident or capable.

“This is good advice in general. I’ve noticed at work that whenever someone points out something I’ve done wrong (even when I had no way of knowing that thing was wrong, such as when the person in charge of a project changes its goals and doesn’t specifically tell me), I’ll always say sorry. I’ve noticed though that the people higher up here never say sorry for anything, which is probably partly why they’re higher up – they appear stronger. The thing is, when I say “sorry” what I often mean is “I didn’t mean any offence/ill intent in doing this thing.” Maybe I should stop, but it just seems more polite than saying “Okay, sure” when someone points out a mistake I’ve made.” –JupiterCloud

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